Ink Formulation Software

Best-of-Breed Enterprise System for Accurate Formulation


Techkon offers and actively supports Colibri® ink formulation software. It is the most sophisticated ink formulation platform available. It delivers accurate color matching for a variety of printing substrates.


With our ink formulation software platform in place most colors can be matched on the first proof with a well-prepared ink calibration. Leftover inks can be worked into new ink formulas.

Easy to Use

Use Colibri on a single station or deploy on server for use across the enterprise. Our customers find the product easy to use with a logical layout and say that they are impressed with the accuracy of the results.

Color Matching

Colibri ColorMatch is the result of 40+ years of technology development. It has been thoroughly tested in a wide variety of applications.

Handles a Variety of Ink and Paper Types
Colibri ColorMatch is capable of handling the wide variety of ink and substrate types encountered in print applications.
Matches Colors Rapidly with Less Trial-and-Error
Up to 80% of the recipes produce an acceptable match on the first try. The remainder need 1 to 2 corrections.
Get to Zero-Waste with Left-Over Ink Reuse
Leftover inks can be used as the base in formulating new colors. Colibri selects the right leftover ink and makes appropriate corrections.
Ink Selection Expert System
Selecting the right inks is a big part of color matching. Rules for light fastness, heat resistance, FDA compliance can be programmed into the expert system.
Dispensers & Spectrophotometers
Connects with a large variety of dispensers and most commonly used spectrophotometers. Labels can be printed with dispensing of recipe.
Recipe Correction

Colibri ColorMatch supports different scenarios for recipe correction:

♦ Correct a recipe and make new mix. This is done when matching colors in a lab using small quantities.

♦ Batch addition to correct an existing batch by adding inks. This is normally used for correcting a production batch.

♦ Search and correct closest existing production recipe on the same substrate is also an option.

Use leftover ink to match a new target color by using the leftover as a base and applying a correction.

Calibration Sets

Ink calibration data is built from drawdowns for each ink on contrast card. System verifies accuracy of calibration data and provides tools for analyzing and improving the quality of calibration. You can also add ink properties for expert system. Data for inks provided by suppliers can be imported. Colibri adapts to different ink resins and paper types using the same base calibration data. Just a few additional samples for new material enable Colibri’s optical model to adjust the entire ink set. This is a big time saver if you work with many different substrates.

Power Tools

Handling of large amounts of color standards, calibration data or ink recipes is needed at times. Colibri provides additional modules for power users to automate batch processing.

♦ Create recipes catalogs with a large collection of colors for different applications.

♦ Replace obsolete inks in all the recipes containing the old ink.

♦ Distributed computing can be used for massive recipe formulation jobs distributed to multiple computers running in parallel.

♦ Verify color feasibility with a web based method to check how well colors can be reproduced on different materials. This tool provides a priori validation of brand colors collections for more intelligent color selection.

♦ Color gamut analysis and comparison for ink sets using optional Colibri modules

♦ A QC module is also available as a separate tool or as add-on

Enterprise Deployment

Colibri is available both as a single seat license for local use and as enterprise server for connected multi-site use. Connectivity enhances organizational performance. With Colibri Enterprise Edition:

♦ Calibration data sets can be managed from one point and used across sites.

♦ Expert know-how about ink selection for different applications can be pre-programmed for uniformity of best practices across the organization

♦ Changes in inks, color strength, standards, expert rules are propagated to enterprise through the cloud.

♦ Users can be grouped to with fine-grained controls for actions and data access. Folders of data can be shared with others in same group

♦ Spectrophotometers supported include most current and legacy devices so current assets can be re-used alongside new SpectroDENS units.

♦ Connectivity with ERP systems like SAP is also an option.


Techkon’s SpectroDENS is well-established print color measurement device with over 5000+ installations.

♦ FAST – Quick, responsive operation in measurement, calibration, wake up.

♦ ACCURATE – High repeatability on all colors, agrees with XRGA*

♦ RELIABLE – Rugged LED design, no moving parts, 2 yr. warranty

♦ CONVENIENT – Ergonomic side port, single handed use

*NOTE: Measurements made with SpectroDENS can be used interchangably with XRGA devices since the inter-instrument agreement is proven to be within the XRGA range.

Ink Formulation In Use

Formulation Accuracy

Formulation Accuracy

Here are results from color matching tests conducted by a customer using Colibri ink formulation software. Ink recipes predicted for 10 target colors were mixed and produced by drawdowns on Leneta card. The color of each drawdown was compared with the corresponding target color by measuring on spectrophotometer. The ΔE values in the chart below show the difference between drawdown and target color. The average ΔE is 0.94 for the 10 colors.
The results show the accuracy and predictive capability of Colibri’s multi-flux optical model. Both the calibration sets and test sets were made on Leneta cards. This represents the best results that can be expected under ideal conditions.

A second set of colors were tested on a paper with higher ink absorbency. Colibri translates ink calibration data from low-absorbency Leneta cards to higher absorbency papers. The need to create separate ink calibration sets on different materials is eliminated. The results below represent the results from this exercise. The average ΔE is 1.7 for the 7 colors.
There is some loss of accuracy in translating data from non-absorbent to absorbent substrates. But 80% of the colors are typically acceptable at first proof. These results are more typical of what is encountered in practice.

Correction Accuracy

Correction Accuracy

In cases where the first drawdown proof does not produce an acceptable match, a color correction can be made using Colibri to predict an adjusted ink recipe.
For this test, first predictions were purposely made to have a high ΔE by NOT applying the absorbency compensation to the calibration data. This lets us see the performance of color correction more clearly.
The hashed area in the bar chart shows the improvement from first proof to the corrected second proof. Correction improves the color on average by 2.2 ΔE. About two-thirds of the deviation can be removed on average by a single correction.

Summary of Colibri Formulation and Correction Accuracy

Getting Started

  1. Download installer from web. It includes Microsoft SQL server and runs on 32-bit or 64-bit versions of Windows XP, 7, 8, and 10
  2. Activate license from start screen. License file is sent by email within 24 hours. Every license is tied to a single computer.
  3. Review product guide with step-by-step screenshots and setup online training session.
Get a Quote, Schedule a Demo, or Ask a Question